NZNO returns to the black

After dipping into the red the previous year, the NZNO’s $21m-plus budget ended the year in the black, last week’s annual general meeting was told.

Chief executive Memo Musa addressed last week’s 2017-18 annual general meeting after a year dominated by the long and fraught negotiation process for the DHBs’ multi-employer collective agreement that saw the union face strong criticism on a number of occasions.

In his speech for the AGM, Musa said health was a human right for nurses too – with professional wellbeing part of that right. Nurses had the right, he said, to be equipped to provide excellent care, a healthy workplace with empowering policies and safe staffing levels and workplace conditions. “And, perhaps most essential to your wellbeing,” he said, “you have the right to be recognised for what you do – to be valued and fairly paid.”

He said it had been an extremely complex year, which had included an election and the initiation of DHB bargaining.

“But if you look at the submissions we wrote, the campaigns we ran, the publications we produced, the media attention we generated, and the bargaining we conducted – the work outputs and the achievements have been truly phenomenal. And we have also bucked the trend in that we are the only union in New Zealand to have grown its membership.”

He said NZNO’s total membership grew 4.7 per cent to 50,708 members (up from 48,444 last year). Financially the organisation had an income of $21.4m (more than 90 per cent from members subscriptions) and expenditure of $21.7m. But he said tax and adjustments meant that NZNO ended the year with a surplus of $182,419, which followed the organisation ending the previous financial year (2016-17) $266,697 in the red after tax after four years of health surpluses.

“Last year in my AGM report I said we do not celebrate enough of our successes, and that we are highly critical of our shortcomings, to the point that it overshadows the good things – and the progress we are making,” said Musa. “I would like to restate that it is vital that as an organisation for nurses we celebrate the successes and the work we have done together and collectively.”

Some statistics from 2017-18  annual report:

  • Held 184 professional forums attended by about 6000 people
  • Made 27 submissions to government and related agencies
  • Membership grew 7 per cent to 50,708 members (up from 48,444 last year)
  • Membership support centre took on average 770 calls a week
  • Medico-legal team dealt with 282 new medico-legal cases involving 354 members ranging from coroner’s cases to Health and Disability Commissioner complaints
  • Strategy towards pay equity settlement agreed to as part of DHB negotiations
  • Negotiated around 33 collective agreements
  • Official launch of NZNO Strategy for Nursing (one of seven major publications)



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